Writing Research Papers

This guide to writing research papers is designed for my digital media classes at the University of Washington, Department of Communication.

In general, the papers I assign are theoretical inquiries, not primary research. Theories predict or explain behavior or events. In order to write an exemplary paper, you will need to examine all sides of an issue or problem. In the process, you should research and analyze the literature on your topic. At the end of your journey, you will develop your conclusion based upon the theories and literature you choose to include in your paper. To be effective, your conclusion must be supported by the evidence you have presented.

  1. The Proposal – Identifying A Topic
  2. Conducting A Literature Review – Reviewing Sources
  3. Writing the First Draft
  4. Revising the Draft
  5. Polishing the Paper
  6. Citing Your Work
  7. The Bibliography

Sources used in preparing this tutorial:

Lester, J.D and Lester, Jr., J.D. (2003.) Principles of Writing Research Papers. New York: Longman/Pearson Education.

Markman, R.H, Markman, P.T, andn Waddel, M.L. (1994.) 10 Steps in Writing the Research Paper, 5th ed. Hauppauge, NY: Barron’s Educational Series.

Spatt, B. (2003.) Writing from Sources, 6th ed. Boston: Bedford/St. Martin’s.


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